Sometimes, while on vacation, it feels as though life has stopped – like we are frozen in time – and that nothing will have changed when we return. Last night we returned from two weeks of relaxation and rejuvenation. However, throughout the entire two weeks we were surrounded by indicators that, rather than stopping, life goes on.
On one of the first days at the cottage, I lost my watch. I thought I remembered taking it off before heading to the dock, but it was nowhere to be found. Daily searches in the sand under the dock were also fruitless. My Fitbit was gone … but life goes on.
“I trust in you, O Lord; I say, ‘You are my God.’ My times are in your hand.” (Psalm 31.14-15)
The Monday before leaving on vacation I was – after over a year and a half – able to visit Frieda with communion. That same day I was in conversation with Sandra, planning a post-vacation visit. Over these past two weeks I have had much contact with both families, because Frieda and Sandra are now in heaven. However, even for them, life goes on.
“I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.” Words of Jesus recorded in John 11.25-26.
“Live Not by Lies” (A manual for Christian Dissidents by Rod Dreher), a book I read this week, highlights many changes taking place in our society these days, using the term “soft totalitarianism”. In the second half of the book he suggests ways to “live in the truth,” emphasizing God’s Word, family, and worship. To me this sounds like the exact same thing the Church has been emphasizing for centuries … and life goes on.
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” (Colossians 3.16)
About a week into our vacation we found my watch on the floor in the back of our van. How it got there we do not know. A couple days later we visited a friend at his cottage. He had asked me to help him launch his new Jet Ski. When we arrived, he was a bit unnerved – he could not find the keys to the SUV trailering the Jet Ski. After a while, we discovered that the SUV would start without him having a key, which led to a “Laurel and Hardy” type routine of us backing the trailer and launching the Jet Ski. A day or two later he found the keys wedged into the seat. Life goes on.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” (Proverbs 3.5-6)
On the same Monday before vacation I had a great visit with Davis. His wife of nearly 60 years was in the hospital and not doing well. We laughed and cried, prayed, listened, and communed. This past weekend Eleanor returned home … and late Monday night Jesus carried her to the place he had prepared for her in eternity. As life goes on, I anticipate many more similar visits with Davis.
“In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” Words of Jesus from John 14.2-3. We returned home late last night, in order to prepare for out of town guests who will arrive later tonight. We have a granddaughter who will be baptized on Sunday. I have not even mentioned Pastor Rick’s visit to the hospital last weekend, Pastor Jerry covering for him at the last minute, or the fact that my toenails are in desperate need of clipping! From the significant to the mundane … life goes on. And, as it does, Jesus assures us, “Behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28.20)